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I find it interesting when a young writer somehow manages to render a story with insightful accuracy as to issues of age and aging. Lincoln Cole has done precisely that, in his Literary Classics award-winning, Ripples Through Time. Cole offers up Calvin, a highly imperfect man who, having lost his wife of many years, is prepared to end it all. Calvin has difficulty getting around and is sorry about (if not regretful about) his current relationships with different members of his family, but he is nevertheless prepared to visit the graveyard where he can die at his wife’s freshly filled grave. Then Edward White—who in his young 50s, is “just a kid,” to Calvin—shows up at his door. Edward tells the old man he dropped by to see how he is doing. Calvin thinks, “I’m eight-one damn years old, broken, scared, and alone for the first time in nearly sixty years. What the hell kind of question is ‘how are you’?” In fact, Calvin is 83—but in many ways, these and other similar thoughts of his, set the stage for everything that transpires thereafter.
As Ripples Through Time progresses, the difficulties and pains of various family members come to light, as do some of the secrets they’ve stored over the years. Cole treats each with respect and compassion. Thus it is that, even while Calvin is in many ways not a highly “likeable” man, readers appreciate how his now-dead wife had influenced him to becoming a somewhat “better” man. They will also find a bud of healing begin at her funeral—and through it, may find healing in their own lives.
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